Want to s pice up 2012? iHere's th e class for you
suzy belton has been doing her homework to find new ways of self-improvement
Congratulations; you've made it through the murky, lazy festive period. And if you're hoping to right those slothful, sleeping-til-noon wrongs with a bout of self-betterment, you're certainly not alone. January is, after all, the month of The Clean Slate -- a time when we can reinvent and reinvigorate our lives. And if the gym/macrobiotic food charade isn't for you, perhaps an evening class might set you on the path to a better You. And for those who fancy a complete career or personality reboot, there is no shortage of quirky avenues on offer . . .
In previous years, pole dancing reached a rather glorious zenith around the time the Pussycat Dolls' popularity had reached fever pitch. The Dolls may have disbanded, but pole dancing is still a great way to work your core muscles . . . and pick up a few bedroom tips to boot. It certainly beats mindlessly working away on a treadmill.
www.polestars.ie, or call 1890 88 23 24 for information on classes in the capital
Bikram is so old-hat: doing yoga while suspended in mid-air from the ceiling, however, is not. Somewhat euphemistically called 'cocooning', anti-gravity yoga blends dance, aerial arts and Pilates to revitalise the age-old art of yoga. Perfect for anyone who says they get bored during a yoga class.
Yoga4All hold classes in Sandyford and Swords. www.yoga4all.ie, or call 086 845 3210
Who doesn't want to experience the thrill of being airborne without paying for pricey flying lessons? You can try gliding out at the Dublin Gliding Club, Gowran Grange Airfield, near Punchestown, Naas, Co Kildare. Take a trial lesson and get day membership during the summer months to see what the fuss is about.
www.dublinglidingclub.ie for all the details
According to those in the know, the eyes have it when it comes to uncovering the secrets of the body and soul. According to practitioners, iridology reveals the levels of health in the body, where problems lie and what stage they have reached. At any rate, it'll make a good party piece. Courses in Cork and Dublin are being offered by the Irish College Of Iridology, starting in March.
www.iridology.ie, or call 087 077 37420
You know the one where you turn up to the wrong Leaving Cert exam?
According to dream interpreters, it means that you have little confidence in yourself. Or how about the one where you fall off a tall building? You have ambitions that have yet to be fulfilled, apparently.
Analysis experts claim that people can get a better understanding of their souls if they observe and analyse their dreams.
Evening classes are available from Michael Sheridan at Aisling Dream (featured on RTE's The Afternoon Show) in Cork and Dublin.
www.spiritireland.com for more information
Oh, to be able to look into the future . . . or even just develop a rather nifty new party trick that will impress others. After all, who doesn't want to be able to envision a white knight or job promotion in the next 12 months? Classes in Tarot for beginners start soon at Marino College of Further Education.
www.marinocollege.ie, or call 01 883 2100
What's not to like about a class that can get you fit and allow you to wear chiffon and jingly bracelets? Belly dancing makes for a seriously sexy performance, and as an added bonus it gives dancers a rather nifty workout. Devotees say that regular shimmying helps lose weight and improve blood circulation, strengthens muscles and increases flexibility. Washboard types needn't apply, as a bit of jiggle is essential! To put your festive love handles to use, contact Bellydance Ireland.
www.bellydanceireland.com, or call 01 296 3856
If you ever get the feeling that you're getting trampled underfoot by life, a course in assertiveness could give you the skills to help you get what you want. And who doesn't want to be empowered enough that they'll never say 'yes' when they mean to say 'no'? Try the Confidence course offered by Old Bawn Community School in Tallaght.
www.oldbawnadulteducation.ie or call 01 452 6137
Make Your Own Cosmetics
You can save a few quid through by-passing department stores' myriad beauty counters and making your own paraben-free products. The Organic Centre in Rossinver, Co Leitrim, runs part-time evening/weekend classes in Natural Cosmetics and Soap-making. Body creams, lip balms and bath oils made with essential oils are made during the course. The Organic Centre also runs courses on wine making and growing an organic vegetable/herb garden.
www.theorganiccentre.ie, or call 071 98 54338
If you don't realise how valuable an asset your time is, why not spend . . . um, time on this day-long course? Designed to help attendees make the most out of every day, PDI is perfect for anyone who misses life's little deadlines on a regular basis.
www.professionaldevelopmentcourses.ie, or call 01 861 0700
For those who believe that there isn't a course for everyone out there, behold Exhibit A; a course that teaches folk how to walk up a hill. Walkabout Wicklow offers courses that cover everything from reading a compass and identifying terrain to exploring Irish hills safely. Friendly banter and the burning of several calories are the pleasant added benefits.
www.walkaboutwicklow.com, or call 086 792 9579
Very simply, a course for the man or woman who has already run the evening class gamut from Spanish and cooking to creative writing. As well as being Bosco's home, the Lambert Theatre in Monkstown offers puppet making and puppet demonstration workshops for children and adults alike.
www.lambertpuppettheatre.ie, or call 01 280 0974